A digital magazine on sexuality in the Global South

Author: Ajay Maherchandani

book cover for the bopok 'sexualness' by akshay khanna

Book Review: ‘Sexualness’ by akshay khanna

akshay khanna, who is a social anthropologist and a political activist, weaves the narrative of how the Queer body came to be included into juridical registers of the State as a citizen-subject. The book is divided into six parts starting with an Introduction. The tone of the book is already set before the introduction to the contents, when it starts with the lines of the historic poem “Hum Dekhenge” written by Faiz Ahmed Faiz in 1979. The book is based on multi-sited doctoral fieldwork carried out by akshay between October 2005 and February 2007. The introduction starts with a discussion around India’s modernity, sexuality and ‘sexualness’, moving on to talk about men holding hands in India, and the curiosity with which it is viewed by Europeans and North Americans...
Photo of Indian dresses. A pink saree, an orange saree, and a blue salvar suit - all three have colourful flowers and designs on them. Screen reader support enabled. Photo of Indian dresses. A pink saree, an orange saree, and a blue salvar suit - all three have colourful flowers and designs on them.

Caged

I haven’t really focused on my sexual identity that much. It was always a part of me, the cage that society built around my identity; but wasn’t really that much of a big thing. After my ‘coming out’ as gay, accepting another label, people around me swung into action. They gave it an exoticism. Something that was supposed to be different from all the cages that they encounter around them.
x